There was a time when 'meditation or no meditation?' was a serious issue for me. I come from a Protestant background where in my (admittedly biased) view prayer was a practice of reciting long-winded and important-sounding words. I struggled for years with the concept of prayer. It did not make sense to me that in church other people should pray on my behalf - but then I thought that was just me being the rebel again, and I kept quiet about it.
Outside of church I read books about prayer, and the prayers of other people. Still, I had this feeling that something was missing. Eventually I gave up on figuring out what prayer is about and just got on with life.
Of course I had conversations in my mind with God, but none of the books that I read described these conversations as prayer. The conversations were also quite one-sided, because I told God